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Gender, Agricultural Commercialization, and Collective Action in Kenya

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  • Fischer, Elisabeth
  • Qaim, Matin

Abstract

With the commercialization of agriculture, women are increasingly disadvantaged because of persistent gender-disparities in access to productive resources. Farmer collective action that intends to improve smallholder access to markets and technology could potentially accelerate this trend. Here, we use survey data of small-scale banana producers in Kenya to investigate the gender implications of recently established farmer groups. Traditionally, banana has been a women’s crop in Kenya. Our results confirm that the groups contribute to increasing male control over banana. While male control over banana revenues does not affect household food security, it has a negative marginal effect on dietary quality. We demonstrate that the negative gender implications of farmer groups can be reduced or avoided when women are group members themselves. In the poorest income segments, group membership even seems to have a positive effect on female-controlled income share. Some policy implications towards gender mainstreaming of farmer collective action are discussed.

Suggested Citation

  • Fischer, Elisabeth & Qaim, Matin, 2012. "Gender, Agricultural Commercialization, and Collective Action in Kenya," GlobalFood Discussion Papers 121229, Georg-August-Universitaet Goettingen, GlobalFood, Department of Agricultural Economics and Rural Development.
  • Handle: RePEc:ags:gagfdp:121229
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    File URL: http://ageconsearch.umn.edu/record/121229/files/GlobalFood_DP8.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. repec:ags:stataj:119292 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. Nassul S. Kabunga & Thomas Dubois & Matin Qaim, 2012. "Yield Effects of Tissue Culture Bananas in Kenya: Accounting for Selection Bias and the Role of Complementary Inputs," Journal of Agricultural Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 63(2), pages 444-464, June.
    3. John G. McPeak & Cheryl R. Doss, 2006. "Are Household Production Decisions Cooperative? Evidence on Pastoral Migration and Milk Sales from Northern Kenya," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 88(3), pages 525-541.
    4. de Haen, Hartwig & Klasen, Stephan & Qaim, Matin, 2011. "What do we really know? Metrics for food insecurity and undernutrition," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 36(6), pages 760-769.
    5. Lauren Pandolfelli & Ruth Meinzen-Dick & Stephan Dohrn, 2008. "Gender and collective action: motivations, effectiveness and impact," Journal of International Development, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 20(1), pages 1-11.
    6. Markelova, Helen & Meinzen-Dick, Ruth & Hellin, Jon & Dohrn, Stephan, 2009. "Collective action for smallholder market access," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 34(1), pages 1-7, February.
    7. Austin Nichols, 2009. "Causal inference," DC09 Stata Conference 8, Stata Users Group.
    8. Antony Chapoto & T. S. Jayne & Nicole M. Mason, 2011. "Widows' Land Security in the Era of HIV/AIDS: Panel Survey Evidence from Zambia," Economic Development and Cultural Change, University of Chicago Press, vol. 59(3), pages 511-547.
    9. Ecker, Olivier & Qaim, Matin, 2011. "Analyzing Nutritional Impacts of Policies: An Empirical Study for Malawi," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 39(3), pages 412-428, March.
    10. Bernard, Tanguy & Spielman, David J., 2009. "Reaching the rural poor through rural producer organizations? A study of agricultural marketing cooperatives in Ethiopia," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 34(1), pages 60-69, February.
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